What you eat when you train and what you eat on race day are entirely different things. I would say for your long runs you do NOT need to increase your carbohydrates pre-run. (POST long run is different) If you feel you have to, then you are doing your long runs too fast. Despite Mark's anti marathon stance most of the current good training programs are VERY primal compatible since all but a couple workouts per week are done EASY....read right around that 75% mark.
Right at around 18 miles during training is the earliest I take supplemental fuel. Water only on anything less. And that was BEFORE I went PB.
What you eat during the race is a different matter. I use gu (roughly every 7 miles). I will continue to use gu...the speed of absorption is nothing to sneeze at. However, when I am racing I am running a good 90 seconds to 2 minutes per mile faster than on a long run.
That being said, your goal is to finish. I hate to say it that bluntly, but there simply isnt time to build a solid running base between now and a May marathon. There are a few decent programs out there but I would say...run. Frequently. Slowly. Occasionally run hard. Like once a week. Build your SLOW long run to NO MORE THAN 3 hours. (if you are fast, cut off by 18 miles) That may be shorter than a lot of first marathon plans that insist you hit 20 miles before the race. With the lack of running base (we are not talking FITNESS here we are talking sport specific muscle and tendon development) runs longer than 2 1/2 to 3 hours will be over taxing with little reward.
If you are continuing to do any Xfit during this time I would cut back to 2 days a week and then run all your runs easy. You dont need to worry about "building speed" at this point. Building speed with excessive speedwork is like making a lego stack 1 brick wide. You can only get so high before it falls over. Build your running base with long slow work....that is building a platform
Last edited by runnergal; 02-17-2011 at 04:33 PM.
MTA: because it is rare I dont have more to say
"When I got too tired to run anymore I just pretended I wasnt tired and kept running anyway" - my daughter Age 7